This is your gift

This is your gift: the strong day’s friendship;
a kiss at night’s crossing; and news of a journey
I had not thought I would make.

Through the tree-ways
light falls onto a fortunate avenue:
old brown leaves and tree-roots are part
of a path going somewhere. Ferns and small stones
admit the sight to a table of elements;
a mystery forest brew of experience.
So the groundwork is laid of a going.
A track that is broader than it seems
allows me onto it. What new presences
are here, what people, what hands and eyes,
what voices speak in a low wood-rustling
I had not thought I could hear? With you
I am in the know, I am in the free,
a great wild open hall of existence,
each being is tall, of a lovely branching,
the air is good to be outside in . . .

I had missed the way. And now in age
I have discovered something of beauty.
There is a fortunate track that leads
past sunlit royal presences.
It is as if among the many
I can be as one. Within the bark,
within the dark, across the year-rings,
still while I breathe, bare or in leaf,
I shall be part of the beauty too.

This is your gift: at the strong day’s crossing
with lonely night, to have offered a dream.
To enter the last stage of a journey
as down a sunlit track in a wood.
It has petered out, a vision fades,
I am on the outside, I am in the same crush
of anonymous houses and alien streets
I was pitched into when I was born.
Raised in a scrapyard as a child
I have stayed clear of a simple closeness,
a touch-of-together, a woodland being . . .
and now I imagine a neighbourhood
with you, a closeness to the elements,
a bareness and a being-in-leaf.
To find a home on a light-rich pathway;
and to know the presences about me
as of earth’s strength. So to be known.

This is your gift: the day’s strong friendship,
a kiss at night’s crossing; and news of a journey
I may or I may not make.

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